Water Charge Climbdown

Water Charges Four Adult Household 

It will take a huge climbdown from government to achieve 200 Euro water charge for 4 Adult home

We have been doing detailed estimates on what water charges might be for quite a while now as the government, Irish Water and the Commission for Energy Regulation constantly move the goalposts.

With the Taniste, Joan Burton announcing to the Dail on November 3rd that a family of four adults will pay less than 200 Euro per annum we decided that further analysis was required.

Using the CER figures confirmed in September of €4.88 per 1,000 litres we predict that unless the government announce an enormous climb down over the next few weeks and Irish householders make significant efforts to reduce water consumption then a four adult home is likely to pay in excess of €1,200 per annum.

This is over six times less than the figure the Taniste announced in the Dail a few days ago and would mean that the cost of water would need to be reduced to less than 80 cent per thousand litre in order for Irish homes to pay the figure the Tanaiste is suggesting.

Summary of Estimated Water Usage for a Four Adult Home

Water Usage per Annum No of Litres Cost
Drinking Water 2,920 €14.25
Showering 140,160 €685
Dishwasher 5,200 €25.40
Washing Machine 10,400 €50.80
Car Washing 3,600 €17.50
Toilets 43,800 €213.75
Incidental 43,800 €213.75
Gardening 7,300 €35.60
Guests / Visitors 20,000 €97.60
Total 277,180 €1,355**
Less Allowance -30,000 -€145**
Total 247,180 €1,210**


*All Above figures are rounded to five cent

** Rounded to nearest 5 Euro

The above figures assume the following

1: Adults drink 2 litres of water each per day

2: Showers average 8 minutes and shower has an output of 12 litres per minute

3: Dishwasher uses 25 litres per cycle and is used 4 times per week

4: Washing machines uses 50 litres per cycle and is used 4 times per week

5: Home has only one car. Car is washed once a month and 300 litres is used when washing it.

6: Toilets (modern ones) have a 6 litre flush capacity and are used 5 times per day whilst in the home per person.

7: Incidental covers brushing teeth, washing hands, water for cooking, waiting for hot water to flow etc and we allow for 30 litres per person per day

8: Garden usage is difficult to access due to seasonal nature and interest in gardening but we allow 20 litres per day per home in total.

9: A 5,000 litre per person is allowed to account for visitors to homes and guests staying over at house over the course of a year.

Water Charges 2014 and the Moving Goalposts

In May (Pre-Local and European elections) we were lead to believe that water charges would be €2.20 per 1,000 litres, each home would get a 30,000 litre allowance and that there would be a 38,000 litre allowance for every child in the household under the age of 18.

However when the CER came back with figures on July 31st which were later confirmed in September we learned that the cost per 1,000 litres would in fact be €4.88 for all homes that do not have a private well or septic tank and that the previously announced 38,000 litre allowance for under 18’s would be cut to just 21,000 litres.

If you have a private well or septic tank the charge will be €2.44 per thousand litre.

Based on our water usage estimates this meant the following

Type of Household Pre Local Election Estimate Post Local Election Estimates
One Adult Home €125 €275
Two Adult Home €270 €625
Two Adult plus Three Minors €450 €1,280
Five Adult Home €700 €1,590

*Above figures based on homes subjected to a charge of €4.88 per 1,000 litres. Figures rounded to the nearest 5 Euro figure.

Related Water Charges Links

May Water Charge Estimates

September Water Charge Estimates

Eight Reasons to Pay Irish Water As little as possible

Ways to Save 500 Euro per Annum on Water Charges

Ireland’s most comprehensive range of water saving products



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